The #1 Way To Save Money: ASK
I don’t know anybody who doesn’t like to save money. Small purchases, large purchases, they all add up. Most of us bust our butt all day to earn a couple hundred dollars, so why not learn one simple trick that will save you hundreds, if not thousands, in 2019?
The best part about this advice is that it’s easy. All you have to do is ask.
Here are 3 quick examples of this put into practice:
ASK FOR A PRICE MATCH
I was buying contact lenses for my wife a couple days ago. They’re expensive! I’m a fan of ordering our lenses through 1-800 Contacts when we need them because they’ve always been good to me. Easy-to-use website, good communication (with an actual human!) and the delivery is always on time.
Anyway, there I was staring at a $375 total. Ouch. See a screenshot of my pain below.
About to click continue, I paused and saw a little chat icon asking me if I had any questions. Yea, I had questions. One being: how the heck can I save some money on these stupid little plastic things?
After a quick google search, I learned that these same contacts were on special over on another site.
Now, truthfully, I didn’t want to go through the hassle of creating an account on this other site. You know, adding all my info, signing up for emails, uploading my wife’s prescription over there, etc.
So I copied the link and pasted it into the chat, and asked “Will you price match this?”.
Here’s the result:
See that? That is $198.07 saved in less than 5 minutes because I paused, googled, and asked for a price match.
Ask: Will you price match?
Time: 5 Minutes
2. Ask for a coupon
This example is even quicker and simpler than the last.
A while back, my wife and I were at Kohl’s getting an emergency pair of shoes for her. We were on a mini-vacation, she was pregnant, her feet were swollen, and the shoes she brought along weren’t working for our planned activities. She found a pair, one size larger than the norm, and the price tag was $49.95.
We got to the register in somewhat of a rush, but I asked, “Are there any coupons that you have available online or otherwise that we can use for this purchase?”
Without a blink, the awesome cashier pulled out a 40% OFF coupon from underneath her register and scanned it for us. Boom, $20 OFF, simple as that!
Ask: Do you have a coupon I can use?
Time: 10 Seconds
3. Ask for a Mortgage Broker
People ask themselves all the time:
“Isn’t a broker just a middle man?” and
“Wouldn’t we save by going direct to the lender?”
These are good and fair questions, so let’s answer them:
No, and no.
More than a middle man, a mortgage broker is not tied to any one lender. If you walk into your local bank, or call into a big box lender, you are talking with someone who works for that one company, and only that one company. That doesn’t mean that loan officers from banks and large lenders don’t have their clients best interest in mind, it means that they only have one set of rates and programs to work with as an option.
And no, savings don’t arise from going directly to retail lenders. Why? Because their operational costs (Advertising, Employees, Margins etc.) are all built-in to your rate and cost in order for them to stay profitable under their business model.
So, always ask for a local mortgage broker who has a business model built with YOU in mind. Local mortgage brokers deal with multiple lending sources which means they have the opportunity to get each client the most appropriate balance of pricing, product and service.
The result? Savings, and a much better experience for you!
Take a quick glance at this Loan Estimate that a client brought to me. Moving from out-of-state to Michigan, this client was referred to us by a local Realtor who knew we could do better than the big name lender they were originally set up with:
The thing with this example is that it isn’t just a couple months worth of contact lenses nor just a pair of shoes, it was the largest purchase of my borrower’s life. When he took 10 minutes to call me and ask if I could save him money, it was well worth his time.
Ask: for a local mortgage broker
Savings: Potentially Thousands
Time: 10 minutes
So next time you’re shopping, whether it’s for a small purchase or a large one, don’t be shy about asking all the questions. Here’s a quick list of questions every consumer should ask when shopping:
Do you price match?
Are there any discount codes you can apply to this purchase?
Do you have any coupons I can use?
Are you running any specials right now or in the near future?
Is there any way to make this transaction cheaper?
Look, there’s nothing wrong with asking the questions, and it literally takes less than 30 seconds in most cases. You work hard for your money, and there’s nothing wrong with politely asking questions to save some of it. You’re not being cheap. You’re not being annoying. You’re not devaluing anyone or their product or their service because you ask a question. You’re being prudent, and you’re saving money.
I probably ask these questions on purchases 3-4 times a week. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. But, “it never hurts to ask”.
I hope my advice to ask more questions and these 3 simple examples encourage you to save some extra money in 2019 and beyond.